The Opportunity in Rejection

I got another no this week. Another opportunity denied. Another chance to show my stuff nixed. And yet, it is okay.

With God all things are possible. 

For the last year, I have been searching, seeking, and hoping for new opportunities. I want better for my family. I want to use my talents, my education, and my experience for the good of the students and the clients I encounter. And yet, the answers continue to be no or  no response.

With God all things are possible. 

Matt Hall, our pastor at South Point Church, says sometimes we get “no’s, not yet, or something different.” My husband likes to add “not right now.” Whatever it is, it is frustrating and comforting at the same time.  It is frustrating because I know what I can do and I know I am qualified. It is comforting because I know that there is still hope of yes, just not right now.

With God all things are possible. 

What is hard about job searching is what it does to my self-worth. When a day, a week, a month or a year has already been hard, getting told “We’ve found a candidate that is a better fit” really does sting. What makes that worse is when trusted people tell me I’m not doing enough to find work. Then, there is the spiritual attacks. You know, the ones where the devil tries to insert his nasty self in your thoughts when you are already weak? Yep, those ones. Those are the ones that make me want to give up.

With God all things are possible. 

So, how does one handle such things? Do I give up and feel bad about myself? Or, do rise up and fight? Well, you know I am going to have to fight. And the fight begins by looking at God’s Word. What does the Bible say about rejection?

In Genesis 15, God promised Abram (later Abraham) that his descendants would be many. He said, “[L]ook now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them.” And He said to him, “So shall your descendants be.” (Genesis 15:5 NKJV)  The next verse shows us that he believed in the Lord. (v. 6)

In Genesis 16, we see how Sarai (later Sarah) stated that the Lord restrained her from having children. So, she told her husband to go to her maid to make a baby. Here, at 86 years old, Abram did as Sarai instructed. The maid, Hagar, conceived and was then hated by Sarai. Hagar is told that her son’s people will be multiplied exceedingly. (Genesis 16)

In Genesis 17, Abram and Sarai get their new names. Then, the couple is promised a son-one they would bear together; one that would come from Sarah’s body. Sarah laughed. At this point, they are both quite old-how would this be possible. God made this promise to Abraham before, but this time, it was more clear. It was as if God said, “Let’s do it my way this time.” Both were wondering how is this possible? They were very old!!!

With God all things are possible.

At the wonderful age of 100, Abraham became the father to Isaac. And Ishmael was sent away. Isaac was the child of promise. But, before we discount Ishmael, God had a plan for him, too. God promised Hagar that he would make a great nation from Ishmael’s seed. (Genesis 21:18 NKJV) Why did God do that? Look at the promise God made Abraham in Genesis 15. Abraham’s descendants would number more than the stars that Abraham could count. Ishmael was one of his descendants. So even though Ishmael wasn’t the child of promise, he was still part of God’s plan; the plan that would have Him keeping His promise to Abraham.

It took Abraham and Sarah most of their married lives to have the baby they wanted. It took FOURTEEN years for the promise of having a baby together to come to fruition. Sarah thought she’d help God. She thought she would usurp His plan. But, the laugh is on her because both boys were part of God’s plan-two very different nations; two world changers. One accepted, one rejected. But, both a part of a promise to one man.

Now, you may be wondering, what is the point? How does this relate to my story? I may not the preferred candidate for some employers. But, God still has a plan. There may be a lot more nos and not yets. But, God still has a promise. There may struggles along this journey of life. But, God has promised that He has a plan-a plan to prosper me; a plan for my future; a plan not to harm me. (Jeremiah 29:11) Abraham waited 14 years for Isaac. That makes my 1 year search seem trivial.

What seems to be rejection after rejection may be opportunities. Opportunities to walk in faith. Opportunities to let Him lead. And opportunities to not “Sarah” the situation. God doesn’t need me to help Him do His job. He has asked me to trust Him. He knows what I need. He knows what I want.  Rejection isn’t always a rejection. It is an opportunity to trust Him. It is an opportunity to wait and to rest. It is an opportunity to change perspective Abraham had to. Sarah had to. Hagar had to. Because….

With God all things are possible. 

Scripture references:


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